Mid-Week Flying

Just a quick thank you to everyone that made my job as duty instructor over the last couple of days so easy, a great team who worked well within the club’s procedures. Also well done to Damien & Hugh Stewart for revalidating their aerotow approvals today & Nick Bowers who took time out of the workshop to renewed his acquaintance with the K6. 

Saturday Flying

Due to the forcast of very high winds, risk of showers & poor soaring potential I (in conjunction with Mike Jenks) have decided to cancel flying on Saturday. Given that we are obliged to operate in a very conservative way for the time being & the need to restrict “man”power on the airfield I judge the risk of aircraft ground damage to be another factor in this decision.
Thankfully the forecast is better for Sunday & the whole of next week so losing a day shouldn’t be a big deal. I look forward to seeing you all again.
Best Regards
John Hull (Julie too)

Wednesday 20th May

Today was a trial to see if we could operate safely under the new current government rules. The CFI gave 17 members a long and thorough briefing, and we then flew some Venture flights and eight aerotows with a mix of private and club gliders. The soaring wasn’t great and most of us struggled to stay airborne in very weak blue thermals but it was great to be flying again. The images show Mike Thorne in 919 taking the first launch at the club since the end of March.

After flying we then had a very thorough group debrief and discussion. We are certain that we can fly and run the club safely, but there are many new important procedures and practices to follow. The Chairman will be sending out an email at the end of the week to explain.

It’s unlikely we will fly on Friday due to the weather, but we plan to on Saturday where we will be using the winch as well as the tug.

Don’t forget the flying week next week .


Restarting flying

There will be solo flying by aerotow only on Wednesday 20th for those who have arranged flying with the CFI. We then plan to have a more normal operation from Friday, but solo only unless with a member of the same household.

New scenery required

 Last evening’s outing to Parham was an outstanding success! Most pilots had not experienced the thrill of blasting along at 100+ knots at (and below 👏👌👍😂) tree top height! (What happens in condor stays in condor😁👍)

We are going to Wales tomorrow! This will require a new scenery area. If you wish to join please download: West-UK2 (1.00)

We will be flying the Duo-Discus.

Hope to see you there,




Ridge Bashin!

Ok Condorteers

Tonight we are going to Parham…Club class gliders only.  A short task but conditions are ideal for fast ridge run.

I,m expecting a local expert to show us the way,🤗

Dont forget to save your task at the end to put it onto the BGA eLadder.

See you there


P.S don’t look out of the window this afternoon😎What a beautiful soaring day!!!!!

New condor update

Hi Everyone

Please ensure you update to the new condor patch before flying tonight, version 2.1.3 should fix problems caused by the last patch!?!

tonights task will be:

Park -Membury -Wells -Park,

slight variation in thermal strength and size, light SW wind.

I may not be able to join but i hope to pop in to check on progress…..



Important – Condor Update to – Users please update!

Hi All
Condor have released an update which supersedes previous versions, there is also a separate updated hangar available.
As the dedicated server has not been updated as of yet if you are running the updated version you won’t be able to join multiplayer until such time as the server is updated as I discovered this evening.
There are lots of new features with the update, notably there is now a ‘spectate’ function so those who are not running condor can follow tasks if they wish.

VE 75 Yaks

Hi Everyone

Hope you are all keeping well.

I saw the Yaks practicing on Weds here in Marnhull but there were only 3 and I don’t think they had sorted the smoke out as it all looked a bit random.

Just like Jorn I saw the 5 Yaks going round and round for about an hour this morning looked like they were doing a circuit Gillingham, Shaftsbury, Sturminster Newton, Marnhull, Stallbridge and maybe out as far as Wincanton they were writing messages all the way round including  “VE 75” – “Thank you” – We’ll Meet Again” were the ones I saw, then I watched them go back into Henstridge. I managed to take this Photo


We’ll meet again

Hi folks,

Just thought I’d share a photo of the skytyping we were treated to by the Yakovlevs here in Templecombe. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get a good photo of the motto of the day (the subject line) and thought it was an invitation to a barbecue (well, meat again), but at least it became obvious that the pilots were suitably grateful for being allowed to fly. Wouldn’t we all!

New BWND server

I hope the condor pilots aren’t boring everyone with our continued use of the blog, however I would just like to thank Dan Pike who has set up a dedicated server, his technical know how leaves me dribbling in the corner of the room, his server will host all on line events with fewer hick ups I hope, we tested it tonight with 7 pilots joining with a minor problem being sorted at the start, once up and running most completed the club 100k task SAS BLD. Tonight’s task was a bit more challenging due to the weather settings, this caused a couple of land outs, but I was also privileged to see some aerobatics from Tomas and Nicky that Tim Dews would have been proud of (better to land with the wheel down though Nicky👍😂) All in all still with the same friendly club atmosphere.

we are planning the next task for Friday evening at 19.00 an out and return to Aston Down.

if there are any specific tasks anyone would like to do please drop me a line, about 100k is about right time wise.

hope to see you then


George wins the club 100 Condor task!

Another good social tonight with George arranging a club 100k task TIS-BRU-MEL with a South Westerly 12knot wind and 4k cloudbase. 6 members participated tonight and all completed the task with George securing top honours. I languished near the bottom but made it round so that was something! Although I did recover from losing the tow at 500ft.
To make it easier I purchased a standalone wireless numerical keypad from Amazon for around a tenner which makes it easier than fumbling the keyboard for those more widely used functions (pic attached).
Just to remind you what it looks like there’s a screenshot of Keevil too!
Thanks George!

Flying is Back( at least ON LINE)

After a successful test flight last night BWND is back in business!
( at least with Condor2 👍😂)

We clocked up our first 360 (virtual) Kms between us with varied results, two successful land outs, very close to home and an enjoyable evening was had by all.

I would like to invite anyone to join us again on Monday evening at 19.00 for another short task.

hopefully it won’t be long before REAL flying commences

stay safe


Condor. 2 on line

Hi All

I hope everyone is fit and well, if not fit at least well?!

Is anyone interested in a group flight, flying on line today at 14.00 using Condor2? I am hoping to Host a flight which will be named “BWND” the password will be “Discus”

All you will need is “UK south EastUK3″scenery.To join the session all you need to do is go to the Condor2 home page, klick on Multiplayer and a list of sessions will show up, then scroll down until you see BWND and press Join, this will then as if you want to start Condor 2 , press confirm and the program should start in the multiplayer screen with the server address already filled out within the game. At this point press join and you should see the task for today, select your steed  check the weather tab etc and press start,

hopefully I’ll see you there



Something a bit different again – FPV

Firstly, I hope all of you are doing well!

Carrying on from Chris’ awesome video from Peru. I wanted to show you some videos from a little project I have been working on myself. 

One of my favourite travel cinematographers, recently shared this shot of him flying across the tops of palm trees, it wasn’t an ordinary drone shot, but one created using a FPV Drone. After a little more searching on the topic of FPV drones I came across Johnny_FPV, this kid makes his living by creating cinematic FPV Shots, and his work is amazing.

Since there was to be no gliding for a foreseeable while, I decided to order one of these FPV drones and try it myself. I trained by flying a micro drone called a Tinywhoop round the house, and once I was proficient with this I decided to take out the full scale version. 

Disclamer: I have a CAA “Licence” (Its referred to as Flyer ID)  with a Operator ID and a Flyer ID and a friend as a spotter, and we do not fly near the public or livestock.  The people in the video are my friends who happen to be Key Workers such as myself & we all work together at the same place. 

Here is what I have created so far:



Something a bit different – Trekking Peru

Hi everyone, hope you are all well!
If anyone else is holed up with a bit of cabin fever and feeling bored I have finally put together a film from my Peru Trek during 2016.
Remember what the great outdoors looks like?
Its a bit lengthy, 45 minutes! So pull up a llama and grab a beer.
For those with smart TV’s you can view on youtube on the big screen.

SIMPLE – SIMulated Pilot Learning Experience – Condor – UPDATE IF PURCHASING

Further to my post yesterday a few members have been in touch regards setting up. I thought I would add a few pointers here.

Before you do anything make sure that you record all your passwords and usernames etc exactly as you enter them when you install Condor as you will need this for Condor updater etc which is a separate add on.

A – Condor 2: https://www.condorsoaring.com/

B – Condor Club: Additional landscapes, forum & comps etc (separate entity from Condor) it’s free so set up a user account- https://www.condor-club.eu

C – Condor Updater – You can access the link for this from the landscapes tab of condor club above – https://www.condor-club.eu/i/CondorUpdater_Setup.exe

Joystick –  You WILL need this so order at the outset. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Logitech-Extreme-Pro-Precision-Joystick/dp/B00CJ5FPTA/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=extreme+pro+3d+joystick&qid=1586345353&sr=8-1

1 – In the first instance download Condor 2 (ITEM A) and set up your pilot credentials noting exactly how you enter your name as you will need this for Condor updater.

2 – Go to condor club as link above (ITEM B)and join.

3 – Download Condor updater from Condor Club (ITEM C). (Not essential to use Condor 2 however if you want to download UK areas for free you will need it) This enables download of landscapes from the Condor Club site. I would suggest paying for the premium updater membership for 12 euros per year as this gives unlimited downloads and doesn’t throttle downloads. Condor Updater allows you to download complete landscapes without having to extract files etc or search for them in Condor Club. The updater shows which landscapes are available to download that aren’t currently in your inventory on your PC.

As before if anyone requires assistance happy to share my limited knowledge.

SIMPLE – SIMulated Pilot Learning Experience. First forays with Condor

Having ‘thought’ about purchasing the Condor computer software in the past that was as far as I had got. In this period of unfortunate enforced grounding it seemed an opportune time to revisit the idea, especially with the offer that Martin informed us about.
Being limited in my computer know how (unfortunately I am not blessed with the level of computer wisdom such as the Pike dynasty) if I can do it anyone can!
A quick check of the required hardware requirements easily found on the Condor website had me thinking this might just work on my PC.
There are 2 grades of software available a cheaper and more expensive package, the only differences being the aircraft and landscapes available (but one 3 times the cost of the other). There is no difference in the end offering save for those aircraft and landscapes, however this need not matter, I’ll explain later.
Opting for the cheaper package, it was easily downloaded to my machine, the package allows you use the software on 2 devices such as a desktop and laptop if you desire.
The guides for setting up the software and indeed hardware are easily accessed through Condor’s website and the software itself.
There is no need for any peripherals such as a joystick or pedals but to get the full experience a joystick is definitely a requirement. From studying forums etc many people (even the pundits) don’t use pedals. As I found by not being able to complete a launch just a keyboard will not suffice.
The joystick I purchased has a twist function for the rudder which adds a lot more feel.
I’ll skip over the rest of the boring bit for now and go flying instead.
So the stock landscape is Slovenia or Slovenia and I somehow found myself in a Blanik, well I pratted around in that for a while to get the ‘feel’ of the simulator and then investigated what else is on offer. I am now the proud owner of a shiny Std Cirrus with interior upholstery straight out of old BR rolling stock (Martin, Jorn I’m coming for you).
The realism is quite uncanny, definitely simulator and not game for those who may be doubtful. Winch launch or aerotow, the choice is yours.
There are training school modes from what happens on the ground to launch failures and spins and stalls. All of it frighteningly realistic.
The great thing with the joystick I purchased is that you can assign the ‘buttons’ for various functions such as gear, trim, release and airbrakes rather than fumbling on a keyboard so adding further to the realism as everything is close at hand. Of course depending on the aircraft you can throw in a bit of flap or water just to confuse the issue further.
After getting used to my shiny new aircraft I figured a task or 2 would be in order. Never having flown a ‘proper’ task it was all very new and the thought processes involved are very real. You can build your own tasks or use the standard task in free flight mode.
I mentioned earlier about the different package levels and having opened up a whole new world of the online soaring community rapidly learned where to ‘find’ things. The main community associated with Condor has loads of landscapes and aircraft freely available. The landscapes are ‘built’ by members of the community and yes the UK features well.
There are a huge number of online competitions being flown around the world and for those on social media you may have seen many tasks have been arranged recently in the UK. Delving further I found that one of these requires the South East UK mapping. These are large files and can take some time to download but even with my cocoa tin and string broadband it wasn’t too painful. There is a premium download option available for a measly 12 euro’s per year which I hastily signed up to.
Imagine my delight when I discovered that the South East mapping extends as far as Yeovilton! The Park yes, its there in all its sunny glory, the ridge, Westbury White Horse to name but a few all feature.
Well this changed things a bit could I get to Rivar Hill??????? That’s another story!
I’m very new to this and every day is a school day but I genuinely believe that this is a worthwhile investment at modest cost. I had the PC already but for £100 I’m up and running (Software, Joystick, Premium Downloads).
If anyone is interested in knowing anymore I’m very happy to share my very limited knowledge of getting going with you!

Staying in Touch

Hi All

A written message and a video message are going out to all members today to bring you up to date with what is going on in the club. My video message is here Video Message We are asking or your help in putting together ways of staying in touch with each other and also having a bit of fun. We need loads of ideas and also teams of people to make it all happen. Lets start a conversation here about what you would like to see and how you might help.